NBC is adding three new comedies and a trio of dramas to its fall lineup, including female-driven shows led by Katherine Heigl, Kate Walsh and Debra Messing. And the ascendant network promises to rebuild its faded Thursday schedule by moving top-rated new series The Blacklist there in February.
Blacklist will begin its second season in its current Monday timeslot, but will take a nearly three-month breather in mid-November, when State of Affairs, a new drama starring Heigl as a CIA analyst, fills the post-Voice slot. Blacklist will return as the post-Super Bowl show on Feb. 1, and then moves to Thursdays at 9 ET/PT four days later.
Other fall dramas are The Mysteries of Laura, starring Messing (Smash) as a cop juggling work and family life, leading off Wednesdays; and Constantine, headed for Fridays, one of four new series due this season based on DC Comics characters.
Also due are romantic comedies Marry Me, from the creator of Happy Endings, starring Casey Wilson and Ken Marino; and A to Z, starring Ben Feldman (Mad Men) and Cristin Milioti (How I Met Your Mother). And Walsh (Private Practice) tackles sitcom duty in Bad Judge as a party-hard, unorthodox criminal court justice in Los Angeles.
Only two shows are changing time slots: The Biggest Loser moves to Thursdays, where CBS will air NFL games for the first six weeks of the regular season, and About a Boy shifts a half-hour later on Tuesday to give Marry Me the benefit of a Voice lead-in.
Helped by the Winter Olympics, The Voice and Blacklist, NBC climbed from fourth to second this season among all viewers, and from third to first among young adults, the currency of Madison Avenue. But it continued to stumble badly on Thursdays, a onetime "must-see TV" night it had long dominated that remains a key destination for some advertisers.
"The overall goal was to maintain stability from our growing number of anchor shows, while at the same time, striving to make every show an event — a guiding principle of our development strategy," said NBC Entertainment chairman Robert Greenblatt, in a statement announcing the new schedule. "And reinvigorating Thursday was a top priority, made possible by moving The Blacklist there in the 9 p.m. timeslot after exposing it to the audience watching the Super Bowl."
Among in-limbo series, Parenthood will return for a 13-episode final run on Thursdays, but Community is ending its run after a fifth low-rated season. And Parks and Recreation will call it quits after a midseason run.
NBC's fall primetime lineup (all times ET/PT, new shows in bold, new timeslots in italics):
Monday: 8, The Voice; 10, The Blacklist/State of Affairs (Nov. 17)
Tuesday: 8, The Voice; 9, Marry Me; 9:30, About a Boy; 10, Chicago Fire
Wednesday: 8, The Mysteries of Laura; 9, Law & Order: SVU; 10, Chicago P.D.
Thursday: 8, The Biggest Loser; 9, Bad Judge; 9:30, A to Z; 10, Parenthood
Friday: 8, Dateline NBC; 9, Grimm; 10, Constantine
Saturday: 8, Drama repeats
Sunday: 7, Football Night in America; 8:20, Sunday Night Football